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Trip Report Melskius clan Japan Trip #4

Discussion in 'Japan' started by Melskius, Feb 25, 2019.

  1. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Hi all. We are back on Japanese soil for trip number 4. Jetstar flight from Gold Coast took off 30mins late, but still had us wheels down on time at Narita. This is our first trip with a ski bag, us and about 4 others had to wait til the very end to collect our bags being the last items out.

    We always make one mistake on each trip, this time (due to overnighting in motel pre flight) we had our toothpaste in carry on, that was confiscated at GC security. So now the kids are dealing with 'too minty Japanese toothpaste.

    Landed about 7pm, but got out of airport around 9pm, after eating and taqbin a clothing bag to Sendai (¥2800).

    Off to Naeba today.
    Oh and discovered a power socket under the middle seat. Was great as 4th gen iPad won't charge via head unit sub.
     
  2. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    This ended up being a travelling sort of day... full of errors as such. We returned to the airport after spending the night at Narita Tobu Hotel (nice size triple for ¥10,260). Had a good old 7-11 breakfast and went to the JR office after the initial opening rush.

    Got onto the 9:48 NEX and it was an unusually slow journey that stopped at least three times (not at any sort of station). That put us into Tokyo at 11:15am, so our long gap had now closed, we hauled the kids and ski bags through Tokyo station arriving at our platform just as the shinkansen pulled in. (When booking these seat I requested the back row - for ski bag). Where we watched the staff flip the seats, making our back row request now front row seats. We ended up sticking the ski bag up on the overhead rack, and had our other luggage under our feet. Lucky the journey was only just over an hour.

    To continue our comedy of errors we looked up a restaurant on guru navi, only to end up going to a restaurant in the same location, but on the other side of the station. The food was good, but ended up being an expensive lunch at ¥6000. Then we hustled to catch the shuttle to Naeba leaving at 2:20pm, the one waiting was full, luckily another on came a few minutes later.

    There was a lot more snow on the ground than our visit last year. Checked in all good, unpacked the skis, ready to hit the slopes in the morning.
    Pics are blue due to bus window tinting.
     
  3. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    It was a earlish start for us. Hubby went off to the breakfast buffet (¥2200). While the kids and I had convience store fair. I had a very nice white choc crossoint. Buying tickets this morning saw our comedy of errors continue. Tues and thurs happen to be ladies day, so tickets for me were ¥3500. We had purchased a webket ticket for Jason (1 day ticket + ¥1200 voucher for ¥5400). At the ticket window the guy hit a few extra zeros and actually charged us $6000 For a $60 purchase. Luckily he spotted him mistake and reversed the charge.

    We skied the front slopes, getting the 5yr old used to being on snow again. We then headed left for some nice cruisey runs. The weather was not cold, cloudy, sometimes blue sky. The snow got lumpy pretty quickly. After the left side became crowded we went up the gondola, but it was pretty icy, busy and a bit colder. The trees up there were so beautiful covered in snow. 5yr old and I rode the gondola down, while hubby and 9yr old skied the pretty steep red run down.


    After a lunch break we went back out but headed right, we did the run to the dragondola a few times as the kids loved it. Then we made our way back over to the left side again before calling it a day. We had all sorts of conditions, from chopped up snow, to lots of crunchy ice, to sand like snow.
     
  4. Lady Penelope

    Lady Penelope One of some lot ... Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hmm, kids not in school? I can ask this, as the mother who has pulled her children out of school to go skiiing :whistle:
     
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  5. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Neither am I....I took long service leave for 2 weeks. School was fine as my kids are in prep and grade 4. Grade 4 is already working way above her grade level and they understand the experience they get from a trip like this.
    I'm also lucky my deputy principal is an avid skier too. Principal was fine with requesting leave. Though I will have loads of work to do on my return after supervising teachers will have had my classes for 2 weeks. Eek.

    Kagura today.
     
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  6. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 4 - Kagura
    We feasted on convenience store snacks for breakfast, pastries and waffles. We were out by about 8am and off to exchange our webket lift ticket coupons and get the kids free passes. We paid the ¥700 extra for an all mountain pass that included Kagura and Naeba.
    We headed over towards the Dragondola. The views were awesome. Over at the Tashiro area of Kagura there was not a breath of wind, but it was bloody cold about -5.

    We started off on the left and made our way across to the right, the runs were bloody icy, skis were chattering. By the time we got to the 4th lift we were cold and hungry, so we went back across to lift 2 to the tonkatsu restaurant for an early lunch at 11am. Luckily we had packed neck warmers, so we pulled then on. After a feed and a warm up, we headed right again.

    This time we actually went right on the 4th lift, and found the orange course, which was actually a bit soft, first non crunch of the day. The kids had a ball on this run, so we lapped that a few times.

    The kids had a few minor stacks at times, but were sking well, I had trouble catching them at times. We were all freezing so around 2pm we left and headed back for the Dragondola. We crossed back across the Naeba face, where the snow was softer and the wind a bit stronger. Then we called it an early one.

    Very impressed with the 5 yr old, he's only had 7 days on snow, 5 at Thredbo. He's handling very well, just got to get him to stop trying to race his 9yr old sister who has a bit more experience.
     
  7. Lady Penelope

    Lady Penelope One of some lot ... Ski Pass: Gold

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    I arrived in Japan with a large box of hand warmers ... we wouldn’t have coped with the cold otherwise (and that wasn’t even in the frozen wastes of Hokkaido ...). Nice pics @Melskius
     
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  8. 2ESki

    2ESki Addicted

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    I'd give up if I was you, it's a boy "thing" :p
     
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  9. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Might have to get some. The 5yr old only complained at the end of the day about his hands being frozen. ( and they were) warmed them up on the gondola, and he forgot all about them when it was time to ski again.
     
  10. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Buy three pairs of gloves .
    Alternate through day
     
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  11. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    The chemical heater packs in Japan seem to run warmer than the ones you buy at home - and last longer. I buy them in Japan to bring home LOL

    Neck warmers, buffs or air holes are a must in Japan - or any actual cold ski location - I was a buff fanatic, but forgot to grab one last week and there was a spare Airhole right there (the lad had 2 to choose from) so I grabbed it. Bloody magic!! I’m a convert.

    Also little single bite chocolates in the kids pockets - eat one every time they’re waiting for the last person to ski in to the lift queue - will keep the internal fires burning and keep them warmer.
     
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  12. Scooter

    Scooter One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    That first shot from the Gondy looking back down towards town is a keeper @Melskius - great shot

    Love the distinct look of the Japanese Alps - those trees mostly beech or birch or something else?

    My thoughts on hand warmers is don't - hate seeing them discarded on the slopes (sign of our disposable society as well as littering). If you are getting cold holds look at thin inners to wear with your gloves or look at better quality gloves.

    Keep the pics coming :thumbs:
     
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  13. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    We had actually been warm the day before, didn't even take the neck warmers with us. The Kagura day we stowed them clipped into our powder skirts. Luckily as it was cold.

    That being said we only had thermals and jackets. Might actually add a mid layer today.
     
  14. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    I like this pic. Taken from the Dragondola.
     
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  15. Froff Life

    Froff Life A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Loving the TR so far. Although 2,200 yen for a buffet breaky seams steep!
     
  16. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    I wouldn’t not use the heater packs for kids if they’re getting cold - I always have a few in my backpack if I’m going out back. But never never never discard them on the hill. 100%. I’ve even taken to collecting rubbish while I’m here - can’t stand the littering. I even did a butt collection while waiting for friends to arrive at the welcome centre...who just chucks them on the ground - GROTS.

    Liners do help.
     
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  17. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Prince hotel. We have switched to their convenience store pastries. Better on the hip pocket. Last year had breaky included free due to it being March and me being a seibu club member.

    There are ways to save a bit of money here. They give you ¥1000 if you skip having your room cleaned (up to 3 days, then they clean regardless). Also being a seibu member you get points for every dollar you spend. Then there's an seibu club atm you can redeem points for vouchers.
     
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  18. Scooter

    Scooter One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Nice - Its a great view but you need to go back and take it on a blue bird day :D

    What's with all the power lines in the area? Notice the lines in the foreground of the pic above with (I assume) a separate set of lines down near the lake and they stand out on a few of the other pics with lines and associated towers criss crossing the mountains - how come?

    Yeah I know @LMB - I cant stand seeing cans etc. just lobbed from lifts - seriously you couldn't hang onto your rubbish until you got to a bin? Some people are just grubs - lazy grubs :mad:
     
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  19. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Walk into town to the supermarket, and get stuff for breakfast there .
     
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  20. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Frustrates me no end, but rather than get angry now I just pick it up and do it out in the open so others get the idea to do something. There’s quite a push at home for people going to the beach to pick up rubbish every time they go. Basically, if you love it, take care of it.
    Do good shit every day.
     
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  21. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 5 - Naeba It was a slow start to the morning, as when we looked out the window it was raining. Luckily the rain turned into snow, so after watch the lovely fat flakes fall, we decided we should get up and go ski.

    We exchanged a webket ticket for hubby (¥5400 includes ¥1200voucher), and it was ladies day again, so only ¥3500 for me. The kids are free at Naeba. We started out admiring the snow, until we went to ski in it, it was sticky slow snow. We got quite wet as the snow came and then went.

    At 11am we took the gondola up to the curry house, not the great views we had last year, as this time we were in cloud. After a good feed, we rode the gondola down, much to the 9yr olds disappointment. We told her that the low visibility wasn't safe.

    We continued to ski the front face of Naeba for the rest of the afternoon, drying off as the rain and snow stopped. There was no wind today, and it didn't feel that cold. The kids are still skiing great on some pretty steep slopes. At about 3:30pm we called it a day. Then had pancakes and waffles for dinner (as one does).
     
  22. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Littering is completely unthinkable to the civilised traveller with respect for other countries. I did notice Naeba Prince staff outside with some form of tongs and buckets picking up any litter from the snow.
     
  23. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Not sure, but there were some big towers seen from the Dragondola and at Tashiro area of Kagura.
     
  24. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    No need to yet, I've found a filled croissant at the prince version of a conbini for only ¥140, so far I've had white choc, custard, strawberry, and choc is for the morning. The kids are having the breakfast of champions- donuts. Stellar parenting happening here.
     
  25. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    No pancakes?
     
  26. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hydro power from the lake at Tashiro
     
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  27. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    That was dinner. A nice cream brule pancake stack.
     
  28. Lady Penelope

    Lady Penelope One of some lot ... Ski Pass: Gold

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    ^^ This. We always put ours in the bin.
     
  29. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 6 - Kagura
    Another slow morning as we worked out what the weather was doing. There were some clouds around. Around 9am we went and exchanged our webket tickets and bought the ¥700 all mountain upgrade. As we headed over to the Dragondola we noticed the snow was not hard and crunchy, but just right.

    At Kagura, the Tashiro area, it was like a ghost town, there was hardly anyone around. The snow was great, the best so far, hard under, but just enough softness on top. We had a ball skiing around this area, dressed a bit warmer so we didn't freeze. There was no wind, and we had a bit of everything, sun, sleet, snow, sun and snow.

    At around 11am they were hungry so we ducked into an eatery next to the lift. Curry was on the menu, so we had curry. We ordered extra rice for the kids, but it too was added to our plates. All good as we just all dug in.

    We continued to ski this area, the kids were having fun skiing through the trees off to the side of the green runs, we even did a few snow angels in the foot deep snow off in the trees. We noticed some weather closing in and decided to bail just before 2pm.

    We boarded the Dragondola in a cloud and had very low visibily - like next to none. By the time we got back to Naeba is was clearer and a slight wind, but the snow was noticibly worse, soft and chopped up. This caught the 9yr old up and she had the falls all the way back across the Naeba face. A few more runs off to the left and we called it quits while everyone was still intact.

    We then dried off the skis and ski gear and packed up the ski bag and ski clothing bag and taqbin them off to the airport (¥5160). Another food court dinner, as we have an early start in the morning.

     
  30. Scooter

    Scooter One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks Sandy - makes sense if there is a major source of generation in the area. Having seen plenty of Japanese village/town pics where it looks like there is power/cables everywhere (and I mean everywhere!!!) was curious seeing so much power infrastructure in the mountains.

    So you done on the slopes now @Melskius ? If so safe travels. Have enjoyed the pics :thumbs:
     
  31. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Japanese villages/towns/suburbs have power cables everywhere, because it makes no sense to put them underground in such an earthquake prone country!!
     
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  32. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 7 - Sendai and Matsushima
    We left Naeba on the 7am bus, arriving in Echigo-yuzawa before 8am. Got tickets reserved for the trip to Sendai via a train change at Omiya. The shinkansen here was 2 shinks joined together, that would separate later. This Hayabusa was a fully reserved train and got us into Sendai at 10:40am.

    We found our way to the close by Hotel JAL city, where we'll stay for the next 3 nights ¥52000 For a triple including breakfast. It was too early to check in so we dropped bags and headed out. First stop was the 31st floor of the AER for a nice free high view of Sendai.

    Then back to the train station for a trip to Matsushima. Here we followed the small crowd to the bayside. We had a look at the close by temple Godaido, accessed by some wide tapped wooden red bridges. After this we purchased tickets for the bay cruise to Shiogama ¥1500 per adult. The cruise took about 50mins past some nice looking islands (this is supposed to be a top 3 view in Japan). I wouldn't rate it that high, but it was nice, though shorter would have been fine too, once you'd seen a few islands they all were kind of the same perhaps if we understood the commentary our view might have changed.

    From Shiogama we caught the train back to Sendai. After checking in, we hunted down Tonkatsu Matsunoya, (by the way it's on the 2nd floor), where we had an amazing meal that was astoundingly cheap. My tonkatsu was under ¥600, hubby's double was ¥830, and the kids meals with toy and drink were ¥400. (I think we ate at one of these in Nagoya a few trips ago).
     
  33. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 8 - Sendai and Yamadera
    We had a good breakfast included in our room rate, then headed off for Yamadera. As we were too early for the tourist centre to open we missed out on taking advantage of the cheaper tourist pass for the Sendai area. So ¥3800 had us return tickets to Yamadera on the 8:18 train (¥840 one way per adult). This rapid train took about 50mins.

    The train wound through the outskirts of Sendai and then further north west, where the ground turned to snow, making us wonder what hike would be like. We arrived in the quaint little town of Yamadera with just a small bit of snow left in a few places, not all over the ground thankfully. The temple is up 1000 stairs, and was built in 860ad.

    After a short stroll through town we arrived at the start of the hike, after a climb of around 100 steps, we arrived at the base shrine, where you then pay a ¥300 fee per adult, ¥100 for kids. Then you head up. The 1000 stairs lead through some cedars and mossy covered rocks, to exposed outcrops of cliff face, and small shrines all over the place.

    Near the summit at 860steps, is a lookout over the valley, then the climb goes up some more to some other temples. Only up here did we encounter some slippage due to snow, a few careful steps and we got by that. The views were spectacular and the descent was all good too.

    At the bottom we stopped for ice creams, not realising that doing so caused us to miss the hourly interval train. So we then took a walk through town, then waited in the station for the 12:17pm train. We really loved our visit here, it was a cool little place.

    Arriving back in Sendai after 1pm, we went to the shopping street for food. Some italian for lunch pastas and pizzas. We then continued to walk the 6 blocks of the shopping street, stopping at Don Quixote for some sweet treats. On return up the street the kids were watching a games parlour, where a guy won a huge bear, then proceeded to gift it to Dale (9yr old daughter), much to her delight ( her problem for how we get it back home - lap bear. So then hubby tried a few times to win something for Oscar (5yr old son), we gave up and headed to the Pokemon centre for a toy instead.

    We made a brief stop back at the hotel to drop things off before heading back out to Tonkatsu Matsunoya for another great dinner.
     
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  34. bluestick

    bluestick One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks for your trip report. Japan is a great place for travelling with kids. Now sans kids this brings back fond memories of our numerous trips when they were young. Sendai and the places nearby are worth exploring. A couple of OK ski resorts not too far away either.
     
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  35. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 9 - Sendai and Morioka
    After another yummy breakfast at the hotel we headed for the train station to use the 3rd day of our five day pass. We caught the 8:08 train to Morioka, the train was another double shinkansen. The trip only took 39mins and had no stops between the two destinations.

    At Morioka we went to the tourist office, where they handed over a walking map of the city. We first went up the Malious building to the 20th floor for a free observatory viewing deck. There were some nice views of Mt Iwate.

    From here we walked through the main street of Morioka heading for the castle park. On the way we stopped at Mister Donuts for morning tea. We then saw the rock splitting Sakura, and walked through the castle grounds (no castle, just some base rock walls evident.)

    It was after 12 and we were not sure what to do next. My suggestion wad head up to Aomori, hubby's was head to the Nikka Whiskey Distillery. We looked up the trains but neither would really work out. So we headed back to Sendai on a slower train, the return jouney was 1:15min , there was evidence it had rained, and it was 4 degrees.

    We then went for a 15min walk to find Coco Curry for a late lunch. After this we walked to see Jozenji dori, a tree lined street (though at this time of year they are just sticks). So we headed back to the hotel to warm up, before heading out to dinner.

    We have definitely been the only foreigners we have seen in Morioka, and there are definitely only a very small number of foreigners we have seen in Sendai.
     
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  36. Tanuki

    Tanuki A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks for the TR, it's a great and informative report to follow. Last year we went to Morioka with our then 4yr old. Our plan after Morioka was essentially do what you've done but in reverse i.e. Sendai + Matsushima + Yamadera on the way to Zao. However a monster storm came through central Japan closing down roads and railways which made it just a bit too hard to navigate with all our gear and a 4yr old. Fingers crossed for 2020.
     
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  37. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    The Hayabusa(green) & Komachi(red) Shinkansens run together up until Morioka where they are split. The Hayabusa continues north to Aomori & Hakodate, while the Komachi heads west to Akita.

    You still won't see too many foreigners in Sendai & Morioka but they are definitely on the increase, especially Morioka which is a bit of a hub for ski areas in Iwate.
     
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  38. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    We actually watched them split before we left the platform. Very cool engineering in action.
     
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  39. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    We have used taqbin extensively this trip. No bags to haul for us, just a backpack with some spare clothes. So much easier when travelling with kids, and worth the extra $40 here and there. Just took some careful planning when packing. Skis were easy 4x pairs in ski bag. Ski clothing and after snow wear in another, then a clothing only bag for the travelling and siteseeing part. Sent ski bag and snow gear back to airport, had already sent clothing bag to Sendai, and have now sent it onto Tokyo.

    I understand none of this would have helped in a snow storm, but is an easy way to travel with kids if you can use it.
     
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  40. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 10 Sendai to Tokyo, via Aizuwakamatsu

    We left the hotel early and caught the 7:34am Shinkansen to Koriyama. From here we changed to a local train bound for Aizuwakamatsu, the journey takes 1hr10mins. We wound our way through some snow, but were blessed with great, albeit cold weather.

    From Aizuwakamatsu station we caught the hop on/ hop off bus (¥1500 for adults plus entry into the 3 main attractions pass, ¥600 if just the bus) We ended up on a 10am bus bound for Tsuruga Castle, we toured the castle and grounds,

    then rode the bus bound for Oyakeun gardens for a lap of the lake, then we were hungry, so 4 gaijin entered a local 7-11 for lunch.

    I had a great carbonara for ¥360, 5yr old a hamburger for¥189.

    After this we headed back by bus to Sazaedo pagoda which is a wooden double helix structure built in the 1700's (included in our ticket). From here we headed up the hill to the 19 tombs site of the byakkotai warriors. Back down the hill we visited the Byakkotai memorial hall (also included in our ticket).

    Then we headed back to the station where we managed to jump on the waiting 15:05 train, for the 3hr journey back to Tokyo.
    Aizuwakamatsu was much bigger than we had anticipated and it is very spread out so not great for walking. The loop buses run on a half hour schedule. Currently sitting on the Shinkansen from Koriyama heading to Ueno. Then off to Asakusa for 3 nights.
     
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  41. Tanuki

    Tanuki A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Epic trip.
     
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  42. PMG

    PMG One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Always worth a watch. :)
     
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  43. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    10 out of 10 orange people agree.
     
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  44. bluestick

    bluestick One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks for highlighting what is so fascinating and special about Japan. When you're there and been a few times it seems all somewhat BAU and not really worth special attention but when back home you go, far out that was weird, marvelous, wonderful. Probably why we keep returning.
     
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  45. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    Train separation is SOP in Europe. If you go to Bourg St Maurice and get on at Gare de Lyon not only are your carriages separated off at some stage, you change direction. I'm not even sure where it happened.
     
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  46. bluestick

    bluestick One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Sorry if misunderstood. That was a general comment about the TR not Shinkansen specific. Although the whole train thing in Japan is enthralling. Cleaning crews, bowing, white gloves, timing, driver clocks and check points etc.
     
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  47. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 11 - Disneysea
    We were out by about 7am, off the 7-11 to grab some breakfast. Then we set of for Maihama by subway and train, 3 changes and about 40mins. One of those trains was jam packed and we were squished it in sardines. We arrived at Disneysea after it had opened at about 8:45 After taking the monorail (¥260). We sat out front and ate our breakfast, then purchased tickets for entry. There was no line to do this and 1 or 2 people in the entry line. Today was forecast to be red crowd (Very crowded 36k +).

    The park is very detailed and visually spectacular. The kids have loved it all. We worked our way around with no plan, we just started by heading right. We went and got fast passes for 'journey to the centre of the earth (for between 1-2pm). We then waited about 20min for 2000 leagues under the sea. This freaked out kids out a bit.

    After that we headed to Mermaid lagoon for some kid sizes fun. This undersea area is visually awesome and the kids had fun riding the rides here. After this we headed to the lost river delta area where the wait times were over 1:40. I knew about single rider options, and I found the entrance for singles, so I ditched Jason and the kids and strolled past the mega long queue, holding up 1 finger for the attendants. The Raging spirit rollercoaster was loads of fun. Then I managed to catch the family before they had even gotten onto their ride. They loved the flying carpets in the Arabian coast.

    After this I decided to try to find the single rider for Indiana Jones Temple of Doom ride. I asked the attendant for single rider, and was ushered through the fast pass entrance. Again I walked past the mega long line At one point an attendant opened a chain and pointed me off down a path that led to a stairwell, and I came out right at the ride entry, in about 4mins. 2 people we ahead of me in single rider. The ride was fun and I ended up at the front of the ride. I was back with the others before they had made it onto the flying carpets again.

    From here we walked around the park, going on most rides with 25-35 min waits. It only briefly started the lightly rain at one point. We watched the Mickey New York show, saw Lightning McQueen. We had dinner at the same place we had lunch, Italian the kids devoured the pizza and pasta which were well priced at ¥700 each.

    We managed to walk out of dinner and right into a big designated spot that was empty and roped off, turns out it was for families with little kids, bonus that was us, so we got let into this area to watch the Fantasmic show, and there was only like 5 other people in the section. We had a small bit of light rain, but it stopped while the show was on. We then made the poor choice of visiting the gift shop on exit, along with half the park. They must make a ton of money. We left the park at 9pm, 12 hours after we entered. The kids did really well, but crashed before the first train station.

    P.s. sorry for the dodgy pics the upload pics option won't show my entire camera roll.
     
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  48. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 12 - Odaiba, Kanda and Asakusa
    After a small sleep in and 7-11 breakfast, we were on trains heading for Odaiba just after 8am. It was a drizzly rainy day here in Tokyo. We arrived at 9:30am to find a small crowd of around 50ish people. We entered Teamlab Borderless at opening at 10am.

    It is a total mind spin, and at times headache inducing in its sensory overload. It was visually amazing and also a technical wonder as to how they manage to create it all. The highlights are the crystal forest, (pic is not it)

    the balloon bounce

    and there even an exhibit you climb through.

    Another one had us colour in sea life pictures, that are then scanned in and appear on the walls interacting with others in a virtual aquarium.

    We left after 2 and a half hours, and grabbed lunch at Wendy's right outside the exhibit.

    This was the line to get in after we left, notice all the umbrellas on the ground floor.

    From here we headed to Kanda, but the vast choice and array of ski shops gets overwhelming and we decided to leave after looking in about 4-5 shops. From here we headed to Don quixote in Asakusa to buy up some alcohol for hubby. And had a quick stop at Daiso for some souvenirs. At 6pm we dropped bags at the hostel and headed out for dinner. McDonalds for the kids, a really nice Katsu for us at Katsuya.
     
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  49. Melskius

    Melskius One of Us

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    Day 13 - the last day
    We had a sleep in and left for a 7-11 breakfast after 8:30am. Checked out, and had them store our luggage. Our first stop was to Tsukiji for Jason to buy another knife from Tsukiji Matsumoto. On the way there we passed through Akiba yodabashi, so we let the kids visit the toyfloor for a few goodies. Then it was on to Tsukiji. The old fish market area has only changed slightly.



    From here we headed to Nezu (behind Ueno) to visit Nezu Shrine. This shrine has a mini tori gate line similar to Fushimi Inari, and has a shrine built in the 1700's. As well as some Koi fish in ponds and we also saw lots of turtles sunning themselves. Today was a beautiful clear day, though a bit chilly. From here we returned at 2pm to grab our bags and head to Tokyo station. Once at Tokyo station we reserved some tickets on the NEX using the last day of our JR East pass. We then had an hour and a bit to kill, so we found the nearest 7-11 for snacks. We jumped on the 4pm NEX headed for the airport. We then let the kids loose with some more capsule toys. Then we collected the luggage we taqbined to the airport (note terminal 3 is 1st floor of T2). We then joined the mega long check-in queue for our flight home.
     
    #49 Melskius, Mar 8, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2019
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  50. fennekeg

    fennekeg Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    I made additional padding for my mittens with fleece and plush fabric. I also have glove liners but most time don't even need them.
     
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